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I am a wife, daughter, mother, bilingual teacher, poet, author, women's Bible study teacher, world traveler, orphan advocate, and an adoptive mother.  Our adoption journey has been filled with a lot of hurt and loss, along with even more hope, grace, and healing.  Through it we have experienced more of God than we ever bargained for and have watched Him miraculously redeem our story when we surrendered all the broken pieces to Him.

Surviving the Valley Series

Surviving the Valley Series
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Saturday, June 24, 2017

Even quieter now!

All my people are back home, safe and sound. They got to the church a little bit before 8:00 this morning, a bit earlier than expected. And guess what? It's even quieter today than it has been.

They're all three sound asleep.

We stayed at the church until almost everybody was gone, and then we hopped in the car and headed to Chick Fil-A for breakfast, per David's request/"demand" in the middle of the night. He loved camp, but apparently my picky child wasnt too impressed with the food there. :)

It actually made for a nice chance to sit and talk/debrief about their experiences at camp before coming home to unpack a little and fall into bed.

Juan really enjoyed the extra activities and focus for the senior class. They went on a "Senior hike" and got to spend some extra time with their youth leader. The whole compassion focus this year was on raising money for the home kits in Guatemala, and I'm sure it made him proud to know he's one of the few students there (about 7 out of 950) that will be the first group to begin installing those home kits in just two short weeks. (If I heard correctly, I believe they raised around $13,000 for Guatemala between offerings and t-shirt sales. I sure do love seeing how the church is working together toward this one common goal.) And to think, he went on his first trip to Journey only three years ago, still a newcomer to the United States, still not sure about this whole English language. In fact, he refused to speak English his entire first year, yet once he came home from camp, he hasn't stopped speaking it since.

David really had a lot of fun, but he didn't open up too much about it yet. I'm sure he'll tell me bits and pieces over the next two weeks that we have together before we head separate ways again. He came back with a few cuts, scrapes, and bruises from the slide, though. He was the best at communicating with me on the bus ride and throughout the night, so I'm thankful for him letting me know they were ahead of schedule so I got up in time this morning. I know I can count on him to tell me how the trip impacted him spiritually, probably when we go on an evening walk or for a short drive somewhere. We've always been able to have some really great talks about deep things on random occasions. He's more introverted like that, like me. 😊

Mike absolutely loved the experience and told me several times during the week how much it blessed him. He got to the know the other leaders much better, he got to grow closer to several of the students he didn't know before, and he had the chance to see the need for spiritual leaders and mentors like himself in some of the students' lives. He said it was very spiritually renewing and challenging to him, as well. I enjoyed hearing the boys talk so proudly of their dad, saying that the other kids and leaders mentioned what a fun (and funny) guy he is.

They all came home with a completely different experience, yet something now has bonded them in a new way, knowing those experiences all overlapped and they got to see a bigger picture through three sets of eyes  rather than just one. I am glad they're all back home again, but I am so thankful and blessed that they had such an amazing opportunity to go together. Both boys had to skip camp last year because they chose the mission trip instead. This year we knew we had to make it a priority to get them to camp, especially knowing it would be their only year to go together. Then at the last minute, God very unexpectedly opened the door for Mike to join them. :) What a blessing, indeed.

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